Exciting news for the Department of Theatre Arts & Dance! Spring 2020 welcomes a variety of theatrical professionals bringing wonderful opportunities to our students!
The Tectonic Theatre Project is in residence, conducting Moment Work Workshops with students in Acting IV and workshopping Jeffrey LaHoste’s new play Zephyr.
The first week of each month, Loyola University will be visited by Jeffrey LaHoste of The Tectonic Theatre Project who will work with our students workshopping his new play and teaching Tectonic Moment Work. During the final visit in April, Moises Kaufman and LaHoste will work with our students and the residency will culminate in a staged reading of LaHoste’s new play in Nunemaker Auditorium on Saturday, April 4.
The Tectonic Theatre Project was created by co-founders Jeffrey LaHoste and Moisés Kaufman. With core values of courage, risk-taking, innovation, theatricality, social & political change, and egalitarianism, it is a theatre company that “that creates and produces works for the stage that rigorously explore theatrical language and form.” Based in New York City, it builds plays from the ground up and brings new life to existing scripts on stages across the United States and around the world.
Moisés Kaufman is the winner of an Obie, Lucille Lortel, the 2002 Humanitas Prize, has been nominated for Tony, Emmy, and Drama Desk awards, and named a 2002 Guggenheim Fellow in Playwriting. Kaufman is known for his groundbreaking play The Laramie Project. On Broadway, Moisés has directed the 2012 revival of The Heiress with Jessica Chastain, the Tony-nominated 33 Variations with Jane Fonda , Rajiv Joseph’s Pulitzer Prize finalist Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo with Robin Williams, and Doug Wright’s Pulitzer- and Tony Award-winning I Am My Own Wife with Jefferson Mays. He recently helmed the Off-Broadway revival (Second Stage) and Broadway transfer of Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song. He was awarded the 2015 National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama.
Jeffrey LaHoste was nominated for a Best Play Tony Award for 33 Variations. He was nominated for an Emmy Award as a writer of the HBO film adaptation of The Laramie Project, which also received a nomination for Outstanding Made for Television Movie. Laramie won the Humanitas Prize, the National Board of Review (Best Film Made for Cable Television), and the GLAAD Media Award, and was the opening night selection of the Sundance Film Festival before being screened at the Berlin and Deauville Film Festivals. Jeffrey wrote The Very Extraordinary Mr. Law which was presented at the Colorado New Play Festival in 2017 and is writing a new play, Zephyr. He holds a B.A. from Tulane University and an M.A. from New York University and is a Moment Work Teaching Artist.
Co-Artistic Directors Nick Shackleford and Augustin Correro of the Tennessee Williams Theatre Company of New Orleans are developing, along with our Advanced Directing class, the first Loyola Tennessee Williams One-Act Festival in April.
Now in residence at Loyola University New Orleans, the founders of the Tennessee Williams Theatre Company of New Orleans (TWTC), Nick Shackleford and Augustin Correro, have partnered with Department Chair C. Patrick Gendusa to collaborate with Loyola’s Advanced Directing class to develop Loyola’s first Tennessee Williams One-Act Festival. Over the course of the semester, Shackleford and Correro will share with our students the beauty of Tennessee Williams and his work. Students will gain a deeper understanding of the intricacies and musicality of Williams’ words by directing a variety of Tennessee Williams’ one acts guided by Correro, Shackleford, and Gendusa. The first Loyola University New Orleans Tennessee Williams One-Act Festival will be presented April 16, 17, and 18 in the Marquette Theater at Loyola University New Orleans.
The Tennessee Williams Theatre Company of New Orleans is the only company in the entire country dedicated entirely to producing the works of Tennessee Williams. Both Shackleford and Correro were chosen as Gambit’s Top 40 Under 40 for 2019. Correro has directed numerous plays and musicals in the New Orleans area and is currently working on a book adaptation of his Tennessee Williams 101 with Pelican Publishing. Shackleford is a performer known for his roles in the New Orleans area and Off-Broadway as well as a multiple Big Easy Award Nominated Sound Designer.
Loyola University New Orleans welcomes artistic dream team--Bryan Batt and Tom Cianfichi as co-directors, Florence Presti as musical director, and Jauné Buisson as choreographer--to head our spring production of the musical Cabaret.
Loyola is delighted to have Bryan Batt and Tom Cianfichi at the helm of Kander & Ebb’s Cabaret! The 8-time Tony award-winning masterpiece has stood the test of time, including multiple Broadway revivals and tours as well as the film starring Liza Minnelli, thanks in part to a beloved score with songs such as “Maybe this Time,” “Willkommen,” “and “Cabaret.” Presenting a world where nothing is as it seems, yet entertaining to the last note, this dark, haunting musical drama remains as thoughtful and relevant today as ever.
Bryan Batt has won two Screen Actors Guild Awards for his portrayal of Salvatore Romano on AMC's Emmy, Golden Globe, and Peabody Award winning dramatic series Mad Men. Batt has been in nine Broadway productions including Beauty and the Beast, Saturday Night Fever, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Cats, and Starlight Express. He is currently working on the pilot of Garden District, a show set in New Orleans starring Batt and Loyola Theatre Professor Janet Shea.
Tom Cianfichi began his career in New York as an actor, then a director, and then a casting director before turning his artistic talents to retail. A position in visuals for the Bally of Switzerland Flagship store in New York City opened the door to almost a decade in management, buying and selling visuals at one of Madison Avenue’s most exclusive gift and home accessories stores. In 2003, Tom and Bryan joined creative forces and founded Hazelnut on historic Magazine Street in New Orleans. Hazelnut has been featured in The New York Times, House Beautiful, Architectural Digest, and People Magazine, among other prestigious publications.
The show begins rehearsals in late January with Florence Presti--a private voice teacher at Loyola University New Orleans who has garnered the 2000 Big Easy Award for Best Musical Direction of Beehive and the 2002 Big Easy Award for Best Musical Direction of Crazy For You--as musical director and Jauné Buisson--the artistic director of Metropolitan Dance Theatre of New Orleans and recipient of three Big Easy Awards--as choreographer.
Loyola University New Orleans’s spring musical production of Cabaret will run March 20-28 in the Marquette Theater.
By Madeline Taliancich